2011 Poster Sessions : Handling Human Blockage and Mobility Issues in mmWave Communication Systems

Student Name : Y. Ming Tsang
Advisor : Ada Poon
Research Areas: Information Systems
Communication system over Millimeter Wavelength (mmWave) spectrum has been considered as a viable candidate to realize multiple Gigabits per second (Gbps)
data rate. But it is operating at a regime with high number of antennas and very limited number of RF analog chains. Large number of antennas are used to extend the communication range for recovering the high path loss while fewer RF analog chains are designed to reduce transmit and processing power and hardware complexity. In this regime, typical MIMO algorithms are not applicable.

Switched beam system is proposed in the IEEE standards for mmWave system. However, one of the main problems in the system is that device movements and human activities along the transmission path create large disruptions to the communication links. Human blockage can lead to 20 dB drops in signal strength. More advanced protocols that handle these disruptions are needed. An interesting observation is that even though all the disruptions result in signal strength drop and packet loss, the solutions can be very different from one source of error to others. In this poster, we propose a two-step approach to tackle with issues. Firstly, we identify the characteristics of each type of errors and model them as a set of states. Then the states are estimated by our proposed estimation protocols. Second, once the states are observed or estimated, we incorporate them into Markov decision process formulation and execute appropriate actions dynamically.

Y. Ming Tsang is currently a PhD candidate in Electrical Engineering at Stanford University. He received BEng and MPhil degrees in Hong Kong University of Science and Technology in 2002 and 2004. Prior to joining Stanford University, he worked in Hong Kong Applied Science and Technology Research Institutes (ASTRI) as a wireless system engineer from 2004 to 2006. He also held internship positions in Qualcomm in 2007 and 2009. He is the recipient of Croucher Foundation Fellowship from 2006 to 2009.